CALAFCO University

Held September 14, 2020 via webinar.

Disruptive change of all kinds is accelerating for local government leaders, forcing officials to respond to new realities.  More than ever, local government agencies need adaptive leaders who can help their teams and organizations navigate a messy and uncertain world created by a convergence of new realities. This webinar explores things such as: what is the “new normal”; the need to manage and the need to lead; the nature of adaptive leadership; ten approaches for leading others in adapting to new realities; and tips for smart risk-taking.

Webinar is available for on-demand viewing for CALAFCO Members only. 

Held July 11, 2008 in Sacramento

The Golden State - California is one of the most agriculturally productive regions in the world. Not surprisingly, agriculture is also a vital local economic engine. This class will present examples of how and what LAFCo can do - given its charge by the Legislature to encourage orderly growth and development while balancing the sometimes competing state interests of discouraging urban sprawl, preserving open-space and prime agricultural lands, and efficiently extending government services.

Held October 24, 2008 in Los Angeles

So exactly what goes on in all those tanks, pipes and pumps?  LAFCos provide analysis on local agencies that offer waste-water collection and treatments facilities. But what exactly do you look for? What are the questions that should be asked? This class provides an introduction to waste-water facilities and processing. Aligned with LAFCo requirements for MSRs and reviews associated with changes in service levels or boundaries, participants examine the major infrastructure components and how to perform the analysis of the physical and financial capacity of the facilities. The course explores regulatory requirements of interest to LAFCo as well as capabilities and resources for expansion. Large file - please allow time to download.

Held August 21, 2020 via webinar
This session is designed specifically for LAFCo Commissioners. Scott and David will cover the role of LAFCo Commissioners, the Brown Act and PRA for Commissioners and Conflicts of Interests. Navigating the Brown Act, Open Meetings Act and Public Records Act can be a challenge sometimes, so we’ll dive into how to keep yourself and your LAFCo out of trouble in these areas.
Webinar is available for on-demand viewing for CALAFCO Members only.

Held June 20, 2022 via webinar.

COVID-19 has brought many changes and challenges to the ways offices conduct business but none greater than in the world of HR. From recruiting with virtual interviews, to retaining these netizens, the office is just not the same. Join us to learn about emerging problems and trends in human resources that have resulted from the pandemic, as well as solutions.

Webinar is available for on-demand viewing for CALAFCO Members only. 

Held September 14, 2012 in Sacramento

This intensive, practical workshop is designed to give LAFCo, city and special district staff the ability to prepare, initiate, administer, review and comment on environmental documents required by the California Environmental Quality Act (CEQA). Topics covered include: Current CEQA Guidelines; LAFCo responsibilities as a lead agency and a responsible agency; How to prepare categorical exemptions, initial studies and negative declarations; Preparation of requests for proposals for expanded initial studies, mitigated negative declarations and environmental impact reports; How to comment on environmental documents; How to use or amend environmental documents prepared by other agencies; and Relevant case law and new requirements.

Held March 17, 2006 in Sacramento and November 17, 2006 in Irvine

This intensive hands-on practical workshop is designed to give LAFCo Staff, and City and Special District Staff, the ability to prepare, initiate, administer, review, evaluate, and comment on a variety of environmental documents under the California Environmental Quality Act (CEQA).

Held June 29, 2012 in Los Angeles. 

This intensive one-day technical workshop is designed to give LAFCo staff, commissioners, city staff and other stakeholders an in-depth look at the process for consolidation and/or disincorporation of cities. Participants will discuss both the current LAFCo process for consolidation and disincorporation and possible changes to the law, LAFCo guidelines, procedures and terms and conditions.  Experts with a combined experience of more than a century with LAFCo will help lead the course.

Held July 15, 2019 in Sacramento.

This course explores how to efficiently solicit information needed for preparation of the MSR; writing for a range of agencies from well performing, struggling and not performing or fulfilling their intended purpose; writing determinations that will support spheres of influence and future actions. This very unique panel will also provide insight into source documents and areas of determination specific to water agencies and health care districts. Further we will hear the perspective of a special district that has been the subject of an MSR. Don’t miss this distinctive opportunity to learn techniques and strategies to streamline data collection, hone determinations specific to the agency under study and take your MSR’s to the next level.  

Held May 2, 2008 in Los Angeles.

Among the factors to be considered in the review of proposals is the timely availability of water supplies for projected needs. This class will focus on the recent and pending major legal, political and practical decisions which may dramatically affect the water supply throughout California. The session will explore approaches for LAFCo Commissioners and staff to take in assessing the sustainability of water supply and capacity in proposals.

Held January 13, 2020 in Orange County

This course covers the complex topic of legacy costs including CalPERS, OPEB, leave accrual payouts, claims liabilities and other known obligations. Analysis of these costs is instructive to determine potential impact on the financial capacity of the successor agency and tax payers, as well as informing conditions of approval for LAFCos. Estimating these costs and the length of time to amortize them is crucial to decisions by a city, district, LAFCo, JPA Board and third parties such as CalPERS.

This expert panel will share lessons learned from the perspective of LAFCo and special district practitioners, the mechanics and ramifications of amendment or termination of CalPERS contracts, amortizing unfunded liabilities and application of LAFCo terms and conditions related to legacy costs from legal and state perspectives.

Held August 24, 2009 in Sacramento. 

What makes a good development or pre-annexation agreement?  Why are there so many bad ones?  Should these agreements primarily benefit the developer, the jurisdiction, or both?  When should LAFCo have a seat at the negotiating table? This workshop includes presentations by veterans in the land use and development arena who have written and implemented some of California’s premier development and annexation agreements.  Both the successes and the horror stories will be discussed and dissected in what promises to be a lively, interactive workshop. So put on your green visor, roll up your sleeves, and check your ego at the door.  It’s time to sharpen your skills in drafting agreements that really work!

Held Thursday, February 23, 2023, via webinar

Veteran executive officers representing the four CALAFCO regions (Central, Coastal, Northern and Southern) as present three things about the Act that “LAFCo rookies” should know on Day One.  Presenters also describe how these twelve hidden gems will help all LAFCo staff, new and old, apply the Act’s provisions to their daily routines to better serve the public.

Continuing Education Credits: This webinar earned 1.5 AICP CM credits

Held January 16, 2009 in Sacramento

Has disorganization taken over your office? Do you feel bombarded by multiple projects with competing deadlines?  Are you finding it difficult to accurately track your agency’s projects?  Have certain staff members gone AWOL? With a rich library of prebuilt solutions, Office Access can start tracking contacts, issues, projects and maybe even staff immediately!  Key forms and reports can also easily be customized through Access to meet the specific needs of your LAFCo. This class provides a hands-on session for customizing Access functions to match LAFCo responsibilities.  Participants will be working at computer stations learning how to customize Access for their own needs.  

FOUR PART SERIES held via webinar
Webinar is available for on-demand viewing for CALAFCO Members only

California wildfires burned 4.2 million acres in 2020 and 1.3 million acres 2017. In 1964, it took four days for a wildfire to travel from Calistoga in Napa County to Santa Rosa in Sonoma County. In 2017, it took only four hours for a wildfire to travel that same route. Local and state firefighting resources have been stretched beyond imagination. Wildland firefighting is only one of the many functions of an all-risk agency.  With the majority of the of state in a declared drought emergency as of early May, it is sure to be another record-setting year for wildfires. So, what are LAFCos’ role and responsibilities in terms of overseeing these complex services? How can we create Municipal Service Reviews with information and determinations that have meaning and create value both short-and-long-term? What should we be looking at and considering that we aren’t? This very special 4-part series will take a deep dive into Fire and EMS services and LAFCos’ role and responsibility in understanding, studying, and making determinations regarding these complex services. Each session builds on the prior one, concluding the series with a session that explores several case studies highlighting urban, suburban and rural fire service providers.

SESSION ONE held August 9, 2021
Understanding the basics of service models, preparing for the Municipal Service Review and evaluating community needs
SESSION TWO held August 16, 2021
Evaluating current staffing, training, facilities, operations, equipment, anticipated growth and service needs projections, and finances  
SESSION THREE held August 23, 2021
Evaluating governance, DUCs, shared services opportunities, updating the Sphere of Influence and contracts
SESSION FOUR held August 26, 2021
So, you’ve done a great Municipal Service Review, now what? A look at rural, suburban and urban case studies

Held June 5, 2009 in San Diego; April 13, 2010 in Santa Rosa, and November 5, 2010 in Modesto.

Today’s fire service agencies are looking closely at cooperative arrangements to maintain adequate and cost effective services.  LAFCos can play a vital role in helping fire agencies confront multiple challenges and plan for the future. This course features an impressive list of speakers who will discuss functional and full consolidations, contracts for service, and governance models such as joint powers authorities. The discussion will include operational, financial, legal and service level issues and processes, advantages and disadvantages, and presentations of peer-to-peer case studies.  Special topics will address local fiscal and policy control, health and retirement benefit plans, volunteer-based services, ambulance services, cost-sharing, and much more.  

Held June 7, 2021 via webinar
Webinar is available for on-demand viewing for CALAFCO Members only.

This unique session offers you the opportunity to expand your knowledge of the various types of documents that contain signs of a local agency’s financial stability and well-being.  We will offer guidance on how to conduct financial analyses of cities and districts and provide practical tips on how to distill and present financial data in a way that best informs a Municipal Service Review’s audience and invites improved government function. Our experienced panel will lead you through an overview of the purpose and contents of financial documents and reports, including where to find them and how to read them; talk about how to use other tools and measures designed to gauge financial health; help you hone your skills in making reasonable assumptions, conclusions, and recommendations using hard data as well as “intangibles”; discuss the difference of conducting a fiscal analysis in-house vs. hiring an expert; and present a case study of a fiscal analysis for a Municipal Service Review done in-house by LAFCo staff.

Held via webinar September 1, 2021.
Webinar available for on demand viewing for CALAFCO members only. 

A Community Services District (CSD) is a type of special district formed through Government Code 61000 et seq. to provide multiple services to a community. Given their broad scope, forming a CSD involves much more than procedures and paperwork. There are so many things to consider when forming a CSD it can get overwhelming and complicated. This session will navigate the formation process while helping you avoid some of the pesky and unnecessary pitfalls. The list serves are full of a potpourri of questions about CSDs…now’s your chance to get all those burning questions answered! Join us in this how-to session and learn from your colleagues all you ever wanted to know about forming a CSD.

Our diverse and experienced panel will consider: (1) What services can CSDs provide?; (2) Is forming a CSD the best option?; (3) What should you know?; (4) What options should be considered?and (5) What should you avoid?

Held July 25, 2006 in Costa Mesa. 

There are an estimated 6 million people living their American Dream inside communities regulated by one of California’s estimated 40,000 homeowners associations. This one-day workshop is designed to give participants an in depth look at the nexus between HOAs and other public agencies. Where do HOAs end and local governments begin? What are the issues between the factions and what efforts are underway to address them? The class will explore these questions and much more. 

Held November 9, 2015 in Sacramento.

Senate Bill 88, one of the 2015-16 budget trailer bills, authorizes the State Water Resources Control Board (SWRCB) to order consolidations of water systems that consistently fail to provide an adequate supply of drinking water in disadvantaged communities. It also allows for certain CEQA exemptions with respect to well permitting or changes in land use and would exempt from CEQA the adoption of the initial regulations by the state board. So what does all of this mean for LAFCo? How will existing MSRs be used by the State as a resource?  What if LAFCo is already involved and there is a pending action? What will the consulting process between LAFCo and the SWRCB look like? What happens after the consolidation is finally ordered? Who does what and who files what? Join us for a discussion with the SWRCB and the Office of Research and Planning (OPR) to better understand how SB 88 will actually be implemented and how these changes may impact LAFCo. There will also be an opportunity to offer ideas on policy clean-up legislation.

Held February 22-23, 2007 in Sacramento and June 28-29, 2007 in Los Angeles. 

This intense two-day workshop is designed for LAFCo commissioners and staff, county officials, proponents, and stakeholders to renew and share expertise on incorporations. From legislative intent to the election, this seminar covers the breadth of incorporating new cities in California. Topics include roles and responsibilities of LAFCo, the proponents and the county; working with potential applicants; petition requirements; setting proposed boundaries; conducting studies and hearings; CEQA review; revenue neutrality agreements … and many others. Case studies and experienced instructors highlight successful strategies and pitfalls to avoid. Changes in the laws since 2003 will be discussed. 

Held June 29, 2015 in Costa Mesa.

This very informative session focuses on the sometimes perplexing and always complicated world of LAFCO litigation. This session provides important insights to prepare your LAFCO when litigation is anticipated, as well as key strategies for what to do once the lawsuit arrives. A panel of skillful Executive Officers will discuss their experiences when their respective LAFCOs were involved in litigation, followed by some of the best LAFCO attorneys addressing the litigator and public agency perspective.  The session concludes with speakers providing “do’s and don’ts” for LAFCOs relative to handling litigation.

Held December 8, 2014 in Sacramento.

The purpose of this session is to have an engaging discussion about LAFCos, the law, and how to interpret those laws. Uniquely designed by the topics LAFCo Executive Officers requested, we will hear about legal issues pertaining to 56133 and the drought, as well as a myriad of other water issues; SOI updates (CEQA) and amendments; Prop 218 issues; island annexations; DUCs; conditions of approval; and protest proceedings, among many other topics that will be covered. Can you stump the attorney? Bring your toughest LAFCo legal challenge and challenge the best of the best!

Held February 4, 2011 in Sacramento

How many times have you found yourself trying to bring parties together to find common ground on an agreement, application, policy or study?  LAFCo staff can play an important facilitative role to encourage local agencies, community groups, neighborhoods and others to have a conversation with each other to address differences and seek solutions together.  Facilitation requires a specific set of skills. This course provides hand-on practices and techniques in effective facilitation. Participants will learn: The facilitative process; Establishing expectations: yours and theirs; How to prepare yourself and the parties; The art of constructing an agenda; Roles and responsibilities of the facilitator; Techniques to guide discovery, discussion and agreement; Practices to handle conflict, resistance and stalls; Moving a facilitation to closure and we will use a San Luis Obispo LAFCo case study.

Held October 28, 2011 in Sacramento

This course will explore the roles, authority and dynamics of LAFCos engaged in policy, planning and regulatory activities in their regions.  Learn about opportunities for LAFCos to enhance working relationships with public and private entities to address the broad environmental, economic and social challenges of our time. Timely topics will include: (1) encouraging LAFCos to take a holistic approach to food production, open space, mineral resources, energy production and watershed planning; (2) working with the interagency California Strategic Growth Council and its grant programs, data and information in support of  local and regional sustainability; (3) understanding the roles and authority of LAFCos to undertake and participate in regional and statewide studies, projects and other public and private initiatives; and (4) informative case study experiences of LAFCos in Sacramento, the San Francisco Bay Area, Southern California and the San Joaquin Valley.    

Held January 22, 2018 in Sacramento

LAFCo’s often take on a multitude of activities related to government services. Over the last couple years the legislature has generously provided LAFCo with additional opportunities to serve. This course will explore the new responsibilities and requirements given to LAFCo. We will also look on the evolving topic of transparency, how are we doing, and what’s on the horizon. So let’s look at:

  • 2016 Laws: SB 239, SB 272, SB 1266, AB 2257
  • 2017 Laws: AB 1361, SB 448, AB 979
  • Little Hoover Commission Recommendations
  • Transparency: How are we doing? Where are we going?
  • Complete a Transparency Checklist

This course will explore the various roles and how different LAFCos accomplish the goal of serving our many constituents. Given all the transparency requirements for local government these days, we will also take time to review what LAFCos should be doing in this area and provide you with a checklist to ensure you are up to date on requirements.

Held August 11, 2014 in Sacramento.

This is an informative and robust discussion on LAFCos role in the preservation of Agricultural Resources in the state of California. The ability for LAFCos to fulfill this part of their mission is tested and challenged regularly. So what’s new in the world of Ag Preservation and Mitigation? This session will focus on various viewpoints of that question – from the state level to the local LAFCo level. These discussions will allow sharing of new and updated information from all levels from experts on the topic. We will hear new research data from the American Farmland Trust, and gain insight into the state’s perspective on current and future agricultural resources. We will also hear from several LAFCos throughout the state on their successful efforts in the area of developing and executing Ag Policies for their regions. Hear first-hand what the challenges were and how they were overcome to develop and implement these best-practices policies. We will also hear from highly experienced legal counsel on the latest legal issues and case law pertaining to Ag mitigation. 

Held via webinar December 7, 2020
Webinar is available for on-demand viewing for CALAFCO Members only.

This session explores LAFCos role in rebuilding and revitalizing our communities. In light of the economic fallout of the pandemic, historic wildfire season and other factors, LAFCo has an important role to play in guiding the local recovery process. The pandemic exposed and highlighted old paradigms and existing inequities such as access to services (including healthcare), broadband, healthy food, clean water and access to outdoor parks and open space. In this session, we will explore LAFCos role with respect to these access issues and what LAFCo powers intersect with these issues. We will have the provocative and necessary conversation of LAFCos value and the need for proactive LAFCo leadership now more than ever. Our panel, along with attendees, will look at what it means for LAFCo to step into the role of convener and facilitator to be a local government champion and rebuild communities, along with the tools LAFCo has to do so. This includes leading conversations without bias, developing more efficient services (including looking at how the content and process of conducting Municipal Service Reviews and what factors should be considered in the review of a Proposal and how they can be adapted to more effectively meet the changing external factors), partnering to rebuild local economies in a balance way, and making the difficult decisions of taking crisis actions together with stressed agencies. 

Held November 6, 2009 in Los Angeles 

Everyone is looking for the money. Here’s a down-to-basics workshop designed to help unravel the mysteries of local government finance and budgeting. If you have ever mixed up a “net asset” with a “program revenue,” or wondered how property and sales tax revenues trickle down to local governments in California, this is the class for you! Let our team of financial wizards provide you with an overview of: Local government finance in California; How to really understand your own LAFCo budget; Why audits are important; and How to read and understand audited financial statements with confidence. In these stressed-out economic times, it’s more important than ever to have a basic understanding of local government finance and budget issues. Admit it – it’s probably worth the time and investment to sharpen the pencil and increase your financial IQ. We’ve assembled a great team to do just that!

Held August 6, 2020 via webinar

This session covers LAFCo 101 topics such as the authority and purpose of LAFCo; the LAFCo review process; the laws involved in LAFCo decisions and updating Spheres of Influence and Municipal Service Reviews.
Webinar is available for on-demand viewing for CALAFCO Members only. 

Held February 13, 2014 in Ontario

This session is focused on the new protest provisions found in the Cortese-Knox-Hertzberg Act. The new provisions consolidate old sections into a more user friendly organization and allow for waiving of the protest process under certain circumstances. The panel will help us understand just how “friendly” the new version is and why the changes are an improvement from the past process. We will also discuss some case studies regarding the use of the protest provisions. The session will end with a discussion about how these provisions can be changed to make the process even more practical and understandable.

Held October 10, 2013 in Sacramento. 

This course explores using performance measures as part of Municipal Service Reviews (MSRs) to help decision makers better understand a particular factor or issue related to a jurisdiction’s services. Performance measures provide a quantifiable metric that assists in determining how well a function is being completed by an organization. Panelists will provide examples of how they are using performance measures in the MSRs being prepared in their Counties. Don’t miss this exciting opportunity to learn about performance measures and how they might make MSRs a more useful decision-making tool.

Held April 5, 2011 in Ventura

LAFCos work to solve major issues that cover a wide variety of objectives.  Because the process is collaborative, LAFCo staff often work with experts in several disciplines, including planners at city, county, regional and state levels. This course provides an overview of contemporary planning and land use laws and practices in California, and how they pertain to LAFCos.  Learn about State planning and land use laws, and how cities and counties implement them.  Understand how these laws and practices intersect with the Cortese-Knox-Hertzberg Local Government Reorganization Act, the similarities and differences, and effective ways to participate in local planning processes.  Topics include:  General Plans; specific plans, pre-zoning, and zoning; land use entitlements such as subdivision maps, conditional use permits, variances and development agreements; environmental review process; eminent domain, regulatory takings and exactions; redevelopment; initiatives, referendums.  Knowledgeable instructors will illustrate the relationships between these topics and municipal service reviews, Spheres of Influence, annexations, and other LAFCo functions.    ​

Held July 21, 2006 in Sacramento. 

This intense workshop will give LAFCo staff, Commissioners and stakeholders an in-depth look at the techniques for analyzing and making LAFCo water decisions. Hands-on discussion will focus on assessing data, questions to ask water providers, and the resources that may be available to find information. Class highlights include LAFCo case studies, determination guidelines, current law changes, background information, where to find data, and your questions.

Held via webinar Thursday, November 19, 2020
Webinar is available for on-demand viewing for CALAFCO Members only.

This session offers several unique perspectives on the current and projected economic conditions of local governments, impacts to LAFCo operations and capacities, and how LAFCos can begin to think about positive strategies to support local service providers helped lessen economic impacts or maintain service levels in spite of the myriad of economic crises we face. Specifically, we hear from Jim Simon of RSG, Inc. on the current and projected economic conditions facing local governments, including a recession outlook focus on implications for Counties, Cities and Special Districts, and a look at what governance shifts are we seeing or can expect to see given the host of economic disasters in 2020 (pandemic, historic wildfires, civil unrest).  Through the lens of LAFCo Commissioner/County Supervisor Jane Parker, we explore the COVID-19 economic impact on tourism and agricultural sectors and added economic impacts from wildfires to Monterey, along with impacts on disadvantaged communities.  We learn how that has impacted LAFCo operations and capacities and discuss how LAFCos can adapt to the financial crisis to survive. Rounding out the panel, we hear from Executive Officer Carolyn Emery about the fiscal model Orange LAFCo is starting to use to help them better understand challenges facing cities and special districts. We explore other cooperative efforts that mutually benefit citizens/customers through cooperation among agencies as well as more traditional LAFCo approaches. This is followed by a robust Q&A session.

Held March 12, 2009 in Los Angeles and March 27, 2009 in San Jose

SB 375 refers to Sustainable Communities Strategy, California Air Resources Board, Regional Targets Advisory Committees, Scoping Plans, Regional Housing Needs Assessments, CEQA streamlining, Regional Transportation Plan, current planning assumptions and transit priority projects. Huh? What does it mean for LAFCo’s municipal service reviews and sphere of influence updates? How do the goals of SB 375 align with LAFCo’s legislative mandates? How can we increase coordination and reduce the potential for disagreements with all the agencies involved? Should LAFCo ensure that our actions are consistent with the SB 375, regional strategy, regional housing or greenhouse gas reduction targets?  This workshop will try to answer some of the questions on what SB 375 will mean to LAFCo.  The process of implementing SB 375 will be explained by experts from agencies involved. Case studies will be used to focus the discussion on SB 375’s impacts to LAFCos and LAFCos’ role in implementation.

Held April 24, 2012 in Murphys

Given California’s slow and protracted economic recovery from the recession, the times are calling for local governments to reevaluate and retool how they conduct business and maintain service levels to the public with less resources and escalating costs.  This course presents a timely discussion on the fiscal stability of local governments today and the opportunities and mechanics for taking advantage of economies of scale and scope through shared service delivery models and functional consolidations.  

Held July 21, 2022 via webinar.

Revenue and Taxation Code section 99 provides detailed provisions to assist counties, cities, and special districts re-allocate property taxes upon a change of organization, yet the tax sharing process is often at the heart of conflicts that LAFCos often help mediate. Join us as we learn how the Revenue and Taxation Code section 99 is supposed to work - and how it may play out in practice from multiple perspectives.
Webinar is available for on-demand viewing for CALAFCO Members only. 

Held August 13, 2020 via webinar.

This session covers LAFCo Clerk and Analyst best practices, taking an application from receipt through to hearing and completion, Brown Act and Public Records Act and how to effectively respond to the needs of your Executive Officer, Commissioners and the public all while keeping your sanity.
Webinar is available for on-demand viewing for CALAFCO Members only. 

Held November 3, 2021 via webinar

Water and fire issues are not mutually exclusive – they are deeply connected to more extreme weather patterns. The devastating effects of seemingly never-ending fire seasons, drier winters and hotter summers are being felt across the state. We have stressed eco-systems, dried up reservoirs and wells, urban heat islands, hard hit farms and rural communities, and the state’s ever-present need for more housing is pushing development in more rural areas.

So, what’s a LAFCo to do? What is the outlook? What is the state doing in terms of planning and preparing for that outlook? What can local governments be doing to address and prepare for what seems like a bleak forecast? How can local governments partner with each other and the state to better prepare for and respond to these issues?

Join us for this highly informative session that will address these critical questions from several unique perspectives. We will hear from the Chair of the State Water Resources Control Board on state-level policies and trends related to the drought and water issues, and the impacts to communities. CAL Fire will share short-term and long-term projections given the ongoing drought and climate conditions, along with their perspective how local governments providing fire services, can collaborate and partner with each other and CAL Fire to deal with what is sure to be a bleak short-term future. The Governor’s Office of Planning & Research (OPR) will offer best practices for local governments in the areas of land use and resource planning given the current state of the State, and a perspective on how districts-cities-counties-LAFCos can partner and collaborate to address these issues. With the help of LAFCo legal counsel, we will then explore what specific LAFCo actions and perspective shifts are needed to support the “now and future new normal”.
Webinar is available for on-demand viewing for CALAFCO Members only.

Held via webinar January 10, 2022

Join our panel of experts for a multi-faceted look at master tax exchange agreements and the fiscal reviews and resources needed for an effective agreement. We will also hear about resources available to LAFCos when conducting Municipal Service Reviews (MSRs) and looking at the financial abilities of an agency to provide future services (especially upon expansion). We’ll hear about property tax basics and what’s happening with counties still working under 40-year-old agreements. Our HdL Coren & Cone property tax expert will share resource reports such as trends of value change, revenue calculations, and budget forecast tools that are useful resources for LAFCos when conducting MSRs. This will be followed by a case example presented by the former Asst. City Manager of the City of Santa Clarita, who will talk about Santa Clarita’s withdrawal from the Los Angeles County Public Library. Then we will hear from a Board Member of the Mojave Water Agency with a district perspective on their use of trending and economic information in framing the narrative for budget forecasting.

Webinar is available for on-demand viewing for CALAFCO Members only.

Held December 6, 2021 via webinar.

As of early October this year, the entire state was considered in some level of drought, ranging from moderate to exceptional drought, with the overwhelming majority of the state in either extreme or exceptional drought (source is the US drought monitor map dated 10/5/21). While California is no stranger to drought, each series of droughts wreaks greater havoc and takes longer to recover from. For many communities, accessibility to safe, affordable drinking water is hard to come by – and in some areas, groundwater is pumped until the landscape is literally changed. Given all of this, what is an adequate, sustainable water supply these days? How do we – from the state to the local level – reframe the view and the conversation from reactive to proactive and work together more cooperatively? How should LAFCos plan for and respond to the ongoing water crisis?

Join us for this highly informative session as we cover varying perspectives on a myriad of water issues. We will hear the State Water Board’s view on many of these questions including how they view emergency damage control such as water system extensions and hauling. We will hear from a LAFCo Commissioner (and also County Supervisor) from the central valley and get some local context of SGMA, including a case study and insights on what LAFCos can do in terms of dealing with these difficult issues. We will also hear about a case study currently playing out from a northern region LAFCo Executive Officer that involves a community water system in drought crisis, and LAFCos role and challenges in determining an adequate and sustainable water supply.
Webinar is available for on-demand viewing for CALAFCO members only. 

Held February 3, 2012 in San Jose.

This course presents a timely understanding of the dynamics of health care district regulations, challenges and trends, and the role and methods by which LAFCo can evaluate and regulate these public agencies. It features a distinguished list of legal, health care, economic, finance, policy and LAFCo experts. 

Held January 18, 2008 in Sacramento.

This hands-on workshop will give LAFCo staff, consultants and stakeholders an in-depth look at the techniques for analyzing and preparing LAFCo staff reports and recommendations. Participants will explore the elements of a LAFCo review of applications including the required information for SOI and MSR determinations, plan for services, CEQA review, timely availability, and potential LAFCo actions and conditions. Participants will be introduced to a number of case studies, including how to analyze Urban Water Management Plans and other water supply assessments. Other class highlights include where to find supply and demand data, implications of recent water decisions and adjudications on availability determinations, assessing water rights, and your questions.

Held June 26, 2017 in Sacramento
Great minds don’t always think alike. So just what happens when the opinions of your LAFCo Commissioners, Legal Counsel and Staff do not align? Join us for what promises to be unique learning opportunity as we explore this provocative topic. We will hear from a panel of expert LAFCo attorneys who will provide insights into the legal recommendations they make to Commissions. We will also focus on the legal and policy issues faced by Commissioners when deliberating and making their final decisions. We will then delve into specific LAFCo case studies in which great minds did not think alike. Attorneys will also cover a number of important topics:

  • Conflicts of interest; I can vote on that-really!?
  • What is Quasi-Legislative?
  • Current case law review and update
  • Broad conditioning – How broad?
  • Broad discretion in light of the record

Thursday, July 21, 2022 Webinar - 1:00 PM to 3:00 PM

Sharing the Wealth: A Deep Dive into Tax Exchange under Revenue & Taxation Code Section 99

Description: Revenue and Taxation Code section 99 provides detailed provisions to assist counties, cities and special districts re-allocate property taxes upon a change of organization in a process that involves multiple agencies and parties. The tax sharing process is often at the heart of conflicts that LAFCos are compelled to help mediate based on a legal framework that fiscalizes land use. Join us to learn how R&T 99 is supposed to work - and how it may play out in practice. We will explore this process from multiple perspectives, including the County auditor’s office, an affected agency, and, of course, LAFCo.

Panelists: David Ruderman (Colantuono Highsmith Whatley), Holly Whatley (Colantuono Highsmith Whatley), Jose Henriquez (Sacramento LAFCo), and Israel  Guevara (Orange County Auditor-Controller’s Office.)